Turkey Time by Eugene Ward


November is a joyous month Of family celebrations A special month for football games And a gathering of relations.
As we sit around and watch tv And gobble too much food Our home is filled with love and laughter In a festive family mood.
And somewhere in a barnyard A loud argument is heard With the animals shouting fiercely Each trying to have the final word.
The cows yelled, “Eat more chicken” While the pigs cried, “Eat more beef” A duck screamed, “Kill the turkey” And a horse sighed, “Oh, good grief”.
Across this great, wide nation As families eat home cooked meals They talk, but the food is silent Not a gobble, moo, or squeal.





Eugene Ward Biography

Eugene always loved writing poetry. As a youth, he sent poetic birthday and anniversary cards to family members. It was easy for Eugene to remember song lyrics through poetry and he developed a knack for relating life experiences and events in poetic rhythms and rhymes. While attending a junior college, in California (1975), his professors worked effortlessly to advance his creative writing skills. In his spare time he studied nature and seasonal changes, people and places set in poetic form as a foundation for submissions in several poetry contests. In 2006, Eugene’s poetry became a book passing on to family and friends.

Eugene is currently working on a second book of poetry while living in Nixa, MO. Eugene is a member of VVA Chapter 952. The picture is a young Eugene at Basic Training Graduation.

Beloved Hymns: A Mini History by Susan Phillips

Amazing Grace
John Newton 1725-1807
Slave trader who converted to Christianity

America the Beautiful

Katherine Lee Bates 1859-1929
A daughter of a clergyman and professor of English literature. She attended the Chicago Worlds Fair 1893 when inspired to write America the Beautiful.

Angels from the Realm of Glory
James Montgomery 1771-1854
A combination of Henry Smart (a blind composer) and Montgomery hymn “Regent Square”. Montgomery is ranked with Wesley with over 400 songs with over 300 sung today. He was born in Scotland and the son of a Moravian minister.

Away in a Manager
Unknown author
Also called “Luther’s Cradle Hymn” from the early 1600

Blessed Assurance, I am Thine Oh Lord, Pass me not or Gentle Savior, Safe in the Arms of Jesus, Saved by Grace (and more)
Fanny Crosby 1820-1915 (Mrs. Joseph F. Knapp)
A blind poet who said, “Her blindness was a blessing” and wrote over 9,000 hymns. Her life was a testimony of faith.

Christ the Lord is Risen Today, Jesus Lover of my Soul, Hark the Heard Angels Sing, Love Divine All Love Excelling, Oh for a 1000 tongues I Sing, Christ the Lord is Risen came from Jesus Christ is Risen Today (and more)
Charles Wesley 1707-1788
Leader of the Methodist movement who wrote over 6,000 hymns.

It came upon a Midnight Clear
Edmund Hamilton Sears 1810-1876
Written by a Unitarian minister.

My Country tis of Thee
Samuel Francis Smith 1808-1895
A 23 year old student wrote the song in 1831 as he was preparing for the Baptist ministry.

O Come all ye Faithful
Original title was Adeste Fideles-1852 and translated into English by Frederick Oakley. The song was included in John Francis Wade’s writings (a scribe) to English Roman Catholic College in Lisbon, Portugal. Critics say the song, borrowed from a
French chorale or perhaps this was a composition of John Francis Wade.

em>O Come O Come Emmanuel
A Latin hymn from 1200 CE sung during Advent

O Holy Night
Adolphe Adam 1803-1856
A French carol composed in Paris during the Franco-Prussian War in 1812 between the Germans and French. A Frenchman stood and sang O Holy Night and no shots fired. Next, a German stood and sang Luther’s song “From Havens above Earth I come”.

Oh Little Town of Bethlehem
Phillips Brooks 1835-1893,
Episcopal Bishop Phillips wrote the song as a request from the children of the Church school where he was Rector.

Silent Night Joseph Nohr 1792-1848-Vicar Of Church Of St. Nicholas
In 1818, Obendorf Austria, the words were given to a friend, Franz Gruber for a Christmas evening program. The song was sung as a duet with guitar. Four daughters sang the song from village to village while the father sold gloves.

What a Friend We Have in Jesus
Joseph Medlicott Scriven 1819-1886
Written in 1855, and one of the 10 most popular hymns of over 400,000 church hymns published in Church history.

Whittemore, Carroll E. Stories of the Christian Hymns. 1979.
White, Gary. Stuart, David. Aviva, Elyn. Music in Our World. McGraw Hill. New York. 2001.

A Pedestrian Effort Words from the Veep by John Walker

I have been busy with many volunteer efforts during the past few weeks. The following will highlight the achievements for the VVA Chapter. I continue to broadcast every other Tuesday at 8:40 a.m on KICK 1340 am talk radio. The program is about the Veteran and Veteran’s issues. In previous broadcasts, I have talked about the VVA Chapter 952 and numerous discussions on the documentary by Ken Burns. Michelle Dove spoke about the Greene County Veterans Treatment Court. She also works alongside the local Judicial community as the Director of Jericho Commission providing mentors for Veterans in Drug Court and the Veterans Treatment Court programs.

I recently served as the senior representative with the Silver Hair legislature in Jefferson City for three days discussing future senior legislation. The current Missouri stats includes 1/6th of the population are seniors. Better funding might be achieved if the data included both seniors and senior Veterans. The data would better represent the senior needs in Missouri.

I also met with a Veteran Coordinator to the Lt. Governor’s Office about senior issues and the VVA Chapter 952 community work and mission.

Finally, I have agreed to represent Southwest Missouri in determining candidates for the next years class at the Military Academy. I will recommend in order of the top candidates and submit the names to the National board for consideration. It is a lot of work, but interesting!

Well, that is all for now. Thanks for reading. John

Dan Igou (US Navy)

Dan was a RM3 Radioman Third Class Petty Officer with two Tours of Duty 1970-1971; HC-7 Helicopter Combat Support Squadron 7 with Search & Rescue missions inland and off the coast of Vietnam serving as a radioman. The squadron was detached out of Cubi Point Naval Air Base, P.I. and deployed on several aircraft carriers in the Tonkin Gulf.  HC-7 was the most decorated naval squadron during the Vietnam War.   In 1971-1974, the USS Ranger CVA61, was a combat aircraft carrier off the coast of Vietnam providing combat air missions.  Also, the USS Ranger served as a carrier support group to Haiphong Harbor, North Vietnam mining the harbor to cut off enemy shipping supplies to the forcing the end of the war.

Dan served 5 years as VVA Chapter President 952, Springfield, MO and currently serving as Past President, 2nd Vice President. 

Dan is self-employed working in the investment/retirement services business for 25 years, married to Suzanne, 5 children, 11 grandchildren & 1 great grandson.

Reflections on The Joplin Tornado – Ed Faught

Reflections on The Joplin Tornado

Ed Faught

On May 22, 2011 an EF-5 tornado struck the city of Joplin in the Ozark Mountains of southwestern Missouri. The tornado injured over 1,000 people and killed 161 people. Estimates for insured property damage vary from $1.9 billion to $3 billion for the city of about 50,000 people. The storm destroyed a hospital, high school, churches, homes, and other infrastructures. Communication was difficult because the tornado knocked down 17 cell phone towers. The infrastructure city damage made disaster response challenging. St. John’s Regional Medical Center set up triage in the parking lot only to have to move the triage when the hospital caught on fire.

More than 2,000 homes and businesses were destroyed and 20,000 homes lost power. The city had 25 emergency sirens; many ignored the sirens and did take shelter until it was too late. One of Joplin’s nursing homes was hit by the tornado and the bodies were deposited on the main commercial street. The tornado became the seventh deadliest in U.S. history and the deadliest in more than 60 years. As a result of the tornado, meteorological and emergency management organizations reevaluated administering tornado

dramatically improved during the past 20 years.
tornado warnings to encourage people to take shelter when warnings are issued.
Tornado picture from the CBS News: http://www.cbsnews.com/pictures/joplin-tornado/4/

warnings. The science of tornado detection has The National Weather Service changed the wording of

Doppler radar has evolved to detect debris in the air while the older radar technology might give false warnings. Even though the warnings could be a waste of time, it is best to take the warnings seriously. The dead from Joplin’s tornado would agree.

** Ed Faught retired at 24 years combined service in the US Army and National Guard. Ed has a B.A. in Computer and Information Systems and working on an Instructional Technology Masters program and a Masters in Emergency Management.


CBS News. Copyright © 2017 CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved May 15, 2017, from http://www.cbsnews.com/pictures/joplin-tornado/4/
Cohen, N. (2011, May 22). Tornado Hits Missouri City, Killing Many. Retrieved April 04, 2017, from http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/23/us/23tornado.html
Murphy, K. (2011, May 23). Tornado devastates Joplin, Missouri, 116 dead. Retrieved April 04, 2017, from http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-weather-tornadoes-idUSTRE74M08L20110523
Freedman, A. (2012, May 22). The Joplin Tornado, One Year Later: Where Does it Rank? Retrieved April 06, 2017, from http://www.climatecentral.org/news/the-joplin-tornado-one-year-later-where-does-it-rank

Are Phone Books Going Away?

Over the past several years, I have noticed what one might call a interesting phenomenon. The big thick phone book has shrunk. I can remember using the phone book as a booster seat for my kids and it was always handy. When I decided to clean out the old phone books, I decided to use as a back stop for rifle target practice 30 or so years ago.

Today, the phone book resembles a smaller thick pamphlet and target practice would take more than three phone books as the thickness, height and width have reduced as well.

As far back as I remember, the phone book has been the “go to” place for finding businesses’ and individuals’ contact information. Need a plumber? Go to the phone book. Need to know what Betty Sue’s phone number is? Go to the phone book. The phone book was the “Holly Grail” of personal or business information.

The businesses listed in the phone book showed legitimacy. Otherwise, the business could be considered a “fly by night” company. The phone book was the number one external sources for locating a business in the community.

All individuals were published in the phone book. Why? Because every home had a big heavy desk phone tethered to the wall. Many phones had the round dial dialing one number at a time.

If you knew a person’s name and the town, the phone book listed the phone number and address.

Recently, I have investigated, and there is a perfectly logical explanation for the overall phone book content reduction. In a nut shell, the phone book is phasing out.ayer, the smart phone. So what happened? The internet.

Now all I do is “Google it.” Or use some other search engine or directory ap for the number and/or business address. Need an industry rated? Simply look at the reviews, testimonials, rankings, in depth editorials, and analysis of the business or businesses.

So is the phone book gone completely? Well, no. The reason might even surprise you, or maybe not. In some areas, printing phone numbers is a required service even though costly and unprofitable. Other areas, the printed yellow pages or business pages are profitable though advertisements and businesses realize a return. Over 80% of the phone books are delivered to homes while other statistics show that fewer than 11% of the households ever open the phone book.

I’m not here to advocate for or against the phone book. I am simply giving my observations as a long time business owner. In my experience, the phone book as an advertising tool is dead. It took me many years of throwing money away to come to that conclusion. Once I redirected the advertising money, I my response and profit grew. In one of my businesses I saw a 3000% ROI from online advertising. O was surprised! I had never seen that kind of response from the phone book.

*Corey and his wife Jennifer developed VVA Chapter 952 website http://springfieldveterans.org/ and support veteran organizations.

Corey Harrison

Founder and President
Harrison Marketing Systems




Women Veterans Post to Celebrate One-Year Anniversary


Commander Schmidt

Women Veterans Post to Celebrate One-Year Anniversary, Host “Meet and Greet” with National American Legion Commander

On Wednesday, November 2, 2016 from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m., Women Veterans of Southwest Missouri, American Legion Post 1214, will celebrate their one-year anniversary in conjunction with a “Meet and Greet” event for newly elected American Legion National Commander Charles Schmidt of Oregon. The event will take place at Fire Station #8 (Community Room), 1405 S. Scenic Avenue, Springfield, MO.

Festivities will include a presentation by Commander Schmidt, recognition with a Quilt of Valor by the Ozark Piecemakers Quilt Guild, and a Willard JROTC tandem rifle performance. Cake and light refreshments will be served.

The official traveling party will include National Commander Charles Schmidt,
National Commanders’ Aide Dirk Levy, Department Commander Betty Gonzales, Senior Vice Commander Cary Kellett, Department Adjutant Lowry Finley-Jackson, National Executive Committeeman Kenny Goth, Alternate National Committeeman Tom Goodin, National Historian Paul Bennett, Zone and District Commanders when available.

The event is free and open to the public. Please RSVP to Post 1214 by calling 417-882-2557 or emailing ALpost1214@yahoo.com

Women Veterans of Southwest Missouri is the second largest (of five) all-female American Legion posts in the state of Missouri and is the only one in the Springfield area. The post received its permanent charter in November 2015 and to date has 54 members, ranging in age from 19-94. In September 2016, Women Veterans of Southwest Missouri was awarded “Post of the Year” by American Legion’s 17th District.

Homeless Veteran Coordinator for VVA 952 – Sam Hudson

May 2016


I really have a soft spot for homeless Veterans and wanted to talk about a man I met hanging out in the parking lot of the Wal-Mart shopping center. After three or four visits to Subway sandwiches, he began to talk. I told him I was not giving him a hand out, just a hand up. He trusted me enough to sit in my truck eating a sandwich, as the day was cold. The Vet was guarded and did not trust people; so I didn’t ask many questions. Though the warmer he became, the more he talked about four years of living on the streets and making bad choices along the way. He had been robbed several times and showed me the knife wounds in his side and neck describing the hard times on the street. He was afraid and hadn’t talked to anyone in months. I told him where I worked and how I could help; but he was not ready. I asked three times where he was staying and would not say. Finally, he realized that I meant no harm; he said he stayed in an open unlocked space at a storage shelter. I told him he was unwise for not accepting help. I wanted to get him off the street and in the office to assist.

A motorcycle friend of mine knows the landlord of the storage shelter that the Vet was staying. We spoke with the landlord who, at first, was all about money; but quickly remembered his brother was KIA in Vietnam. The landlord said he would find the Vet a place, just give him some time.

Three days later, I received a call to meet the Vet at the storage shelter with the landlord and a guy driving a new black Cadillac with several custom cars in a heated space. The Cadillac owner asked the Vet questions and become the night watchman for the storage shelter and would stay in the office next to the cars. The Vet would receive $ 50.00 a week from each owner. We found a single bed in the trash and set it up for him. The Vet couldn’t stop smiling with the job and warm bed.

I know my Vet won’t be begging at the Wal-Mart. Sometimes when I give a hand up, I really don’t know if the Vet will work the program; but I have a good feeling this Vet will be O K. I stopped by the other day to drop off a case of water at his new home and will continue to check on him every three or four weeks.

If you would like to work with VVA Chapter 952 and the homeless projects, contact Sam through email SamHudson44@aol.com.